There’s no denying that household appliances make our lives much easier. After all, they help us cook our food, clean the dishes, keep us warm, wash our clothes, and keep our homes tidy. Unfortunately, appliances also present dangers for thousands of homes each year.
Some appliances have been known to emit carbon monoxide and other harmful poisons while others are electrical hazards and cause fires. In fact, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, or CPSC, there are 30 deaths and 430 injuries every year from faulty dryers and washing machines alone.
Nearly every type of appliance can be dangerous to users, but some appliances are known to cause more injuries and deaths than others, including:
Washers and Dryers
Statistics from the CPSC reveal that washers and dryers are responsible for more than 16,000 house fires every year. Sadly, dryers with defective lint collectors or exhaust ducts cause fires and burn homeowners far too often.
Washing machines are also prime breeding grounds for mold and illness-causing bacteria. Given the environment they create, it’s not surprising that studies conducted by experts in the field of environmental microbiology have discovered coliform bacteria exist in 60 percent of washing machines, and E-coli lives in approximately 10 percent of washing machines as well.
Inside of every dishwasher lies an internal circuit board that is responsible for running the appliance from start to finish through each cycle. Unfortunately, this one essential component is also responsible for more than its fair share of product liability claims. In some dishwashers, faulty circuit boards have been known to burn plastic components and wires inside the appliance, resulting in a fire.
Another potential danger that can lead to illness is the ineffectiveness of a dishwasher. Typically, this is due to a faulty cycling process that leaves dishes bacteria-ridden and unclean. Therefore, it’s important to never use dishes that aren’t fully cleaned or dried after being run through a full cycle.
Faulty furnaces and other types of heating appliances can be extremely dangerous. If carbon monoxide leaks out of these appliances, the poisonous gas can cause heart problems, cognitive problems, and even death. Sometimes a furnace may have a defect. In other cases, however, people have been injured by furnaces that have been improperly maintained by their landlord or property manager.
Ovens and Ranges
Defective ranges can emit carbon monoxide fumes that go unnoticed by users. The CPSC reports that 200 people die from carbon monoxide exposure each year. A staggering 10,000 more people are injured by carbon monoxide poisoning as well.
Microwaves, slow cookers, blenders, toasters, and other countertop appliances can also be defective and dangerous. These small devices can suffer from electrical defects that may start fires, potentially making them a serious threat to your home.
In addition to these common faulty appliances, gas grills, vacuums, refrigerators, and other appliances can also be faulty and pose a threat. Product liability attorneys have seen thousands of cases involving faulty appliances over the years, providing a testament to just how dangerous they can be.